Some quick thoughts nowhere near complete.

It’s sort of a rule in room design, that it is hard to make a big, wide open room cozy and inviting.  You do this by adding odd, warm, interesting alcoves and inglenooks around the perimeter.

Likewise, modern open plan designed homes are practical in a sense, you can survey the home from front door, through the great room and kitchen to the dining area all at a glance.  But what gets lost is the delightful sense of exploration and being surprised when opening a door and seeing what is beyond.  Old homes had parlors, withdrawing rooms, nooks, turning hallways with many doors, sunny window benches for reading, surprise unexpected seating alcoves.

I kinda look at a WordPress blog the same way.  You have all these plugins and pages, so can you make areas, spaces if you will, that surprise, hopefully delight and entertain.  Odd bits of eccentric whimsy that capture interest.  These are not quite an easter egg but are not in your face either. You don’t want to take away from what you have written but you want to add value.  Navigation is there, easy to find if one does more than helicopter in on a search query and then helicopter out.  They are there if one explores.

These spaces can have utility too. An oaken paneled library, provides knowledge, entertainment, quiet refuge and a sign of what the owner finds interesting.  A bookshelf full of books in a guest room provides interest for insomniacs.

And it may be that these virtual spaces get little used, but if they bring pleasure to you knowing that they are there and to the odd visitor then all to the good.

Needless to say, I’m not a minimalist.

I fear that our technology, search engines delivering you to individual pages you are looking for, while efficient has robbed us of a sense of wonderment and adventure. Can a website or blog be both an effective conveyor of information with an optional dungeon crawl like D&D?

Feel free to comment.

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Source: XXIIVV Webring

I like it.  It’s unconventional and neat.  I think with a ring of personal diaries and wikis emphasizing the Random navigation makes sense – like a teleporter.  All the other points you made: classy, sophistication, minimalism are all valid.  Good webring. Good find.

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Fetch recommendations from threads at micro.blog. Explore links from Discover.

Source: Micro.Threads

This is for exploring and discovering conversations at Micro.blog and intended mainly for Micro.blog users.  However, non-users can utilize part of it’s capability.

Users and Non-users alike can explore many of the sub-category topics on Micro.blog.  Users can find people to follow or conversations to join in on too.

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Bookmark: ADN Finder

This is a social network username directory.  If you know your friends username on Twitter, Micro.blog, Mastodon or (defunct) App.net you can find their handle on the others.  Very handy if someone you follow has left Twitter, or if you are migrating to some new social networks and want your friends to find you.

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WordPress has taken down a handful alt-right blogs, according to several complaints from affected blog owners and readers who claim the sites were removed from WordPress.com, despite not being in violation of the company’s Terms of Service. Some site owners also said they were not notified of…

Source: New WordPress policy allows it to shut down blogs of Sandy Hook deniers | TechCrunch

I like that this policy is written narrowly so as not to open the door to corporations using copyright claims to shut down any criticism.  This fixes a specific wrong.

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In reply to: Blogs in the Wild

I think the Indieweb is aware of the search problem but they have been focused on getting the essentials for individual blogs and stuff you can do with it up and running first.  I’m excited about their outreach to students and educators because I see students and academics seeing the utility for them straight off.

I don’t see mass adoption happening until WordPress builds it into WordPress.com, then lookout world!

But that’s okay. I think what you and I are doing will go like this:

  1. We hunt for homegrown blogs, sites, wikis and such just as we are right now.

  2. We build directories, webrings and syndication services that map out this world.

  3. The thing becomes a self-sustaining flotilla of: a) Talking, pitching in with each other’s projects. b) Experimenting with the format—I like to think that we’re developing an alternate timeline, as if blogs had replaced Friendster/Myspace rather than these other derivative networks. c) And customizing these directories and projects for subcommunities.

 

Those social network silos did a couple of good things even if they are going sour now. 1. They broke Google’s stranglehold on the web and getting found, 2. They offered an alternative advertising choice besides Adsense and Adwords.  This is something even Microsoft/Bing and Yahoo before it could not do.  They proved to the rest of Silicon Valley it could be done and Google was not invincible.  So I’m not anxious for the social silos to crumble too fast, I also get a fair amount of traffic from them.

(And that maybe part of the lack of wider uptake of our directory, webring, blogroll strategy, everyone is getting some traffic now by syndicating to the silos so they don’t see a problem.)

Anyway, I’m not willing to go back to Google being the sole Gate Keeper of the Web. I’ll fight that, no matter how puny my efforts might be. There is a story behind this: you have never been carpet bombed until Google has carpet bombed you.  I’ve been collateral damage in that.  It was things like webrings, directory listings, and a huge network of hyperlinks from little websites that kept my directory on life support until I could rebuild elsewhere. That’s kinda why I started reminiscing about them when the topic came up.  No I’ll never go back to Google controlling the web. I’ll never take traffic for granted again.  Part of the reason I’ve been posting so much is to try and build a reader base before syndication gets shut off.

So yeah, you and I are experimenting with versions of these guerrilla search tools.  We will see if there is any life left in them.

I can roll out a directory ready for submissions in a few weeks if I have to.  All the old directory scripts are a little long in the tooth but I already know the one I would use and how I would use it.  I can roll out webring hosting too since I found that Ringlink perl script. Or you can or we both can.  Again, if need be.

Public uptake is the key, uptake by bloggers and webmasters.  If they are not willing to list themselves, if the public is not willing to to use these to browse, then we have little chance.

Marketing plays in here. I just put up a little advertising banner for the blog directory.  Early signs are it has more visitors checking it out. We’ll see if that’s a temporary blip or a trend.

Anyway it’s fun.

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LEECHING AND LINKING IN THE HYPERTEXT KINGDOMi

Replying to: Indieweb.xyz: Difficult or Silo?

Heh, well everything not on your own domain is a silo, or at least I can make that argument.  Not all silo’s are bad we’ve all just gotten sloppy talking as if they are.  Silo’s become particularly bad when they become monopolies: ie. Facebook, Twitter, Google.  But what you are trying to do with Indieweb.xyz is exactly the opposite, that is create another independent outlet for both articles to be found and also blogs to be found.  We need more of these not less.

Indieweb et al.: Commendably, you have built Indieweb.xyz using Indieweb tech.  But I’m not sure if the Indieweb, as it sits right now, is the best audience.  I mean, we Indiewebbers all “got ours”, we can talk to each other directly anytime we want, we have: webmentions, chat rooms on Indieweb.org, Slack, IRC and maybe other places, we have Twitter, we have our own Indie News self serve aggregator, newsletters and most of what we talk about with each other is Indeweb related.  And there is nothing wrong with any of that, it’s just that, maybe Indieweb.xyz gets overlooked by that audience.  I see you have opened things up so that more diverse non-indieweb equipped blogs can syndicate and I think this is wise.

There are blogs and bloggers out there, basically talking to themselves because nobody can find them.  They don’t know if anybody is reading or appreciates what they post because nobody comments and they have no clue about Indieweb.  They want to reach out but they don’t know how, maybe they aren’t techie, maybe they majored in English at Uni.  How do we reach them?  How do we get them to get off their duffs and nailing manifestos on Indieweb.xyz?  I have to confess, there are times when I forgot to syndicate to xyz because my post was not linking or Indieweb related.  I’m getting over that.

Difficulty: I think it is best if we have to do a little work to syndicate to xyz.  I’ve thought about what if we could syndicate via RSS but that would spam xyz out.  It does not need all my drivel, only my better (or longer) posts.  And if you incorporated RSS then the real spammers would take over sooner or later.

There is a generational thing here too.  I’m not talking about the Indieweb, but others on the web.  They have become passive, or at least it seems that way to me.

Keep at it.  You are experimenting with something good.  When all the massive silos like FB and Twitter go down or wall themselves off, people will discover the need for places like Indieweb.xyz.  They just don’t know it yet.

 

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Once upon a time, when there were actually a bunch of search engines to compare results from, we had Parallel Search Forms.  I won’t call them an “engine” because all they did was display the results from several search engines side by side.

You had one form to enter your search terms and the site would query 2 or 3 search engines simultaneously, displaying the  results side by side for comparison.

Example: You can see the remains of one here (opens in new tab) as an illustration.

I would love to have one of these today, setup like this:

Privacy Search engine #1: Duckduckgo – DDG uses Bing as the backbone of their search.

Privacy Search engine #2: Startpage – SP uses un geolocated, un personalized Google.

Privacy Search engine #3: Mojeek – uses their own index.

This would make it easy to compare search results of the first couple of pages of each AND how many ads are on those pages all in real time.

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/en/search-engines.

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